This year marks the five year anniversary that our son Bowen died. A lot has happened in these five years since PKD took the life of our son. As I train for my upcoming race in honor of him, it causes me to reflect about him, this disease and our lives. When a child is diagnosed with PKD it is devastating and scary. It leaves a parent scared their child may lose their life to this disease and wonder what kind of life will their child even have?
When PKD took the life of our son at only two weeks old we didn’t have a say in the matter. As quickly as our son came into this world is as quick as the disease took him away from us. It showed us how powerful and quick this disease really was. Even though our son was no longer alive, PKD very much still lived on. Even though our son was the one with PKD, we all were affected by it. The effects of his death and disease infiltrated our lives.
There came a point in our grieving process where we had to make a choice. Do we allow our lives to be defeated by this disease or do we choose to rise up and show this disease you will not defeat me? Just because our son died did not mean our love for him died. We very much loved our son, our love for him still lived on in our hearts. He will always be our son and we will always be his parents, just in a different way. We may never be able to celebrate his birthday, his milestones or accomplishments in life, but are able to do things to celebrate his short life.
Instead we run races, raise money and do acts of kindness in honor of him. None of these things will ever bring our son back but helps bring us closer to him by sharing his love putting an end to PKD. It is our way to still be his parents and not let his disease live our life but to choose love instead. Love never fails and never gives up. When love is the choice it is a life worth living. Our son has filled our life with more love than we could ever imagine.
He has showed us you don’t have to live a long life to make an impact in this world. His short life showed us that every moment counts and how precious life really is. No disease can ever take away our love we have for our son; our love for him is greater. What we do with our love for our son matters. It is not meant to be wasted or taken away by a disease but shared with others.